In the second of a series of articles, Insurance Journal profiles five universities that offer undergraduate and graduate degrees in insurance. More universities will be profiled in future editions of Insurance Journal.
Hankamer School of Business
Dept. of Finance, Insurance and Real Estate
Location: Waco, Texas
Degrees Offered: BBA in Risk Management and Insurance.
Number of Students: 16-20
Year Program Started: Late 1990s
Curriculum Offered: Principles of Risk Management and Insurance; Fundamentals of Property and Liability Insurance; Business Risk Management; Fundamentals of Life and Health Insurance; Employee Benefit Planning.
Career Potential: Commercial underwriting, risk management, consulting and commercial brokering. “I’m able to privately place my better students so in a way it gives them a leg up in the job market to be in a smaller program,” said Dr. James Garven, professor of finance and insurance.
What the Program Offers Students: “It tends to be interdisciplinary,” Garven said. “The better programs give a pretty good grounding in different aspects of applied economics, finance and legal principles. You get a broad grounding in a lot of really useful disciplines. Also, our curriculum has an emphasis on critical thinking and analysis.”
What Makes the Program Unique: “We have two full-time faculty and a couple of people that teach on a part-time basis, but certainly it’s a small size so there’s a lot of interaction between faculty and students,” Garven said. “I think that’s a benefit because students get to know faculty very well. In a lot of business schools, student-faculty ratios are higher. It’s easier to give personal attention when you don’t have faceless masses of students.”
Web site: www.rmi.baylor.edu
For More Information: Call Dr. Garven, (254) 710-6207.
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Dept. of Actuarial Science, Risk Management and Insurance
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
Degrees Offered: BBA in Risk Management and Insurance; MBA in Risk Management and Insurance; PhD in Risk Management and Insurance.
Number of Students: 90-100 majors
Year Program(s) Started: 1938
Curriculum Offered: Principles of Risk Management; Property Risk Management; Liability Risk Management; Employee Benefits Management; Government Insurance Programs; Life and Health Insurance; Environmental Risk Management; Management of Insurance Enterprise; Risk Management Information Systems; Risk Management Case Analysis.
Career Potential: Public and private risk management, consulting, insurance companies, agents and brokers.
What the Program Offers Students: “Majoring in risk management and insurance at a highly rigorous academic institution, such as the University of Wisconsin – Madison, provides students with a broad understanding of business concepts; an ability to think, analyze, and communicate; and, a thorough understanding of the risk management and insurance industry,” said Dr. Mark Browne, chair of the department.
What Makes the Program Unique: “We have a very strong, successful alumni base that has been supportive through the years,” Browne said. “This has provided us with funding and expertise that allows us to do more for our students than many other programs. Our faculty has a strong focus on research; extensive involvement with industry, as well as academic and professional organizations in risk management and insurance; and, a passion for teaching and mentoring our students. Also, we offer one of the only courses in the country in environmental risk management.”
Web site: www.bus.wisc.edu
For More Information: Contact Dr. Browne, (608) 263-3030.
University of South Carolina-Columbia
Moore School of Business
Dept. of Banking, Finance, Insurance and Real Estate
Location: Columbia, South Carolina
Degrees Offered: BSBA in Insurance and Risk Management.
Number of Students: Approximately 30 majors graduate each year.
Curriculum Offered: Management of Risk and Insurance; Life Insurance; Property and Liability Insurance; Corporate Risk Management; Employee Benefits.
Career Potential: Graduates work in underwriting, claims, sales, risk management and resinsurance.
What the Program Offers Students: “Classes enhance a student’s ability to solve problems and think logically,” said Dr. Gregory Niehaus, professor of insurance and finance. He also said that students will find it easy to enter the insurance industry. He added that the technical nature of some of the material enhances analytical skills and students will receive insights regarding the management of risk in general.
Web site: mooreschool.sc.edu/
For More Information: Contact Dr. Timothy Koch, chair, (803) 777-6748.
Georgia State University
Robinson School of Business
Dept. of Risk Management and Insurance
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Degrees Offered: BBA in Risk Management and Insurance, MBA in Risk Management and Insurance; PhD in Business Administration with major in Risk Management and Insurance.
Number of Students: 180 majors
Year Program Started: Around 1953
Curriculum Offered: Introduction to Risk Management and Insurance; Individual Life and Health Insurance; Property and Liability Insurance; Risk Management; Employee Benefit Plans; Insurance Operations; Problems in Risk Management and Insurance.
Career Potential: Graduates can become risk managers; brokers/ agents providing professional risk management/ insurance/employee benefits counseling and market placement services for clients; consultants and personal financial planners; and government workers. They also serve in the underwriting, marketing, claims adjusting, planning, governmental relations, information systems, and financial management departments of insurers. “The risk management industry worldwide is really huge and employs millions of people,” said Dr. Sanjay Srivastava, chair. “Over time we have seen more of an emphasis on risk management. We have seen a strong growth in all of our programs with all of our risk concentrations. The job opportunities are tremendous for students that do this.”
What the Program Offers Students: “We’re probably the largest risk management insurance program in the country,” Srivastava said. “We have 28 full-time faculty members.”
What Makes the Program Unique: “I think what makes us unique is that we cover all aspects of risk management, whether it’s financial risk, insurance or property/casualty or actuarial science,” Srivastava said. “The students here have an opportunity to either diversify or specialize, however they want to do it. They can end up doing really quantitative types of jobs or very managerial types of jobs. This university in the last year has made a huge investment in this area and we have invested in new faculty and new programs, so there’s been a huge resurgence in risk management education and research here. We are trying very hard to become the leading center of all of this.”
Web site: www.rmi.gsu.edu
For more information: Contact Dr. Srivastava, (404) 651-8146.
University of Georgia
Terry College of Business
Dept. of Insurance, Legal Studies and Real Estate
Location: Athens, Georgia
Degrees Offered: BBA, Risk Manage-
ment and Insurance; MBA in Risk Management and Insurance; PhD in Business Administration with Risk Management and Insurance major.
Number of Students: 306 majors
Year Program(s) Started: 1965 (undergraduate), 1970 (graduate)
Curriculum Offered: Risk Management and Insurance; Commercial Property and Liability Insurance; Employee Benefits; Life Insurance; Advanced Property Insurance; Advanced Liability Insurance; Insurer Operations and Policy; Corporate Risk Management; Internship in Risk Management and Insurance.
Career Potential: About 35 percent of graduates become agents and brokers, while 40 percent secure jobs with insurance carriers. The remainder enter the reinsurance and E&S markets.
What the Program Offers Students: The program offered about $60,000 in scholarships for the 2003-2004 school year. Also, 104 students participated in an internship program.
Web site: www.terry.uga.edu/insurance
For More Information: Contact Dr. Robert Hoyt, chair, (706) 542-4290.